Skip to main content

What Does the Bible Really Teach About Homosexuality?







What Does the Bible Really Teach About Homosexuality by Kevin DeYoung

As the debate surrounding same-sex marriage heightens in the airwaves of our culture, there is no measure of this issue dying down anytime shortly.  We have heard both sides of the issues, from the evangelical Christian to the mainline Protestant.  Yet, we still do not have a book that deals succinctly with the biblical arguments and yet answers the specific questions people have about homosexuality.  In steps seasoned pastor Kevin DeYoung, no stranger to debates, with his new book, What Does the Bible Really Teach About Homosexuality?  Kevin doesn’t merely repeat old arguments but seeks to get into the context of the biblical passages and objections from those who support homosexuality. 

The book is divided into two major sections, the first dealing with understanding God’s Word and what it says about homosexuality (3 passages in the OT, 3 in the NT), and the second dealing with common objections (from wrong side of history, God of love, etc.).  What was really fascinating to me in reading the book was that Kevin did not just go to the scholars who think like him but also included lesbian and queer studies professors who understood quite clearly what the bible teaches about homosexuality.  In one instance, “The gay Dutch scholar Pim Pronk, after admitting that many Christians are eager to see homosexuality supported by the Bible, states plainly, “In this case that support is lacking.”2 Although he doesn’t think moral positions must be dependent on the Bible (which is why he can support homosexual behavior), as a scholar he recognizes that “wherever homosexual intercourse is mentioned in Scripture, it is condemned. . . . Rejection is a foregone conclusion; the assessment of it nowhere constitutes a problem. (55).”

In parsing Romans 1.26-27 Kevin also looks at what popular philosophers of the day thought about para physin or contrary to nature in terms of homosexuality’s relationship to nature.  Kevin writes, “For example, Musonius Rufus, a popular philosopher who lived around the same time as the Apostle Paul, observed, “But of all sexual relations those involving adultery are most unlawful, and no more tolerable are those of men with men, because it is a monstrous thing and contrary to nature (41).”  Kevin goes onto build his case by a return to the natural design or way that God first created all humanity. 

In Appendix 2 Kevin responds with a healthy dose of grace to those struggling with same sex attraction.  He writes, “I imagine a young man coming up to me as his pastor and saying, through tears, “I find myself attracted to men instead of women. I feel so dirty. I’m so ashamed. I feel bad, miserable, and mad at myself and like a failure before God every second of the day.” In this situation I would eventually get to the call of Christian discipleship to live in purity of thought and deed, but that’s not where I would start because this man already feels impure. I’d tell him that feeling this does not make him a failure, and that the desire to walk in holiness is evidence of the Spirit’s work in his life. I’d tell him about the good news of the gospel (106).”  This winsome and grace-filled response is truly beautiful and something everyone needs to hear.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and its balance of biblical faithfulness and practical guidance in all the issues surrounding homosexuality.

Thanks to Crossway for the copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

My Favorite Color is Blue. Sometimes.: A Journey Through Loss with Art and Color

My Favorite Color is Blue. Sometimes by Roger Hutchison

Taking a look at the digital copy of this book allowed me to look at the striking art inside the book, and its connection to the words of the page that were focusing on loss.  Looking at the physical copy of the book even brings to life more the staggering similarity that the words and pain have together on the page.  The focus here is how certain colors express the sentiments of those who have lost a loved one.  I did not think that I would relate too well to this book until two days ago, as we lost our little boy, who was only 17 weeks old.  The pain is palpable and yet the pages of this book give me good reason to think of my son with a sense of pride and hope.

Roger writes, "You are a shooting star. Your light trails across the heavens.  I blinked and you were gone."  We were full of anticipation at the first and second ultrasounds, and there was the picture of our little boy Jackson, his developing face and little …

The Catholic Novelist in the Protestant South

Mystery and Manners: Occasional Prose by Flannery O’Connor
A profound simplicity of thought, a penetrating vision of what it means to be human, Flannery O’Connor embodies the spirit of bringing fictional stories to life.  Others might call her fiction ‘grotesque’ in a rather unflattering manner, but O’Connor was not content to live up to their criticisms.  In this short book of collected essay and lectures, Mystery and Manners, editors and friends of Flannery, Robert and Sally Fitzgerald have given us a glimpse into the vision of her faith, style and life as a writer.   A lifelong Catholic, Flannery O’Connor sought to wed together the moral integrity of her faith with the character of her craft in writing.  Specifically, fiction for her was an exploration in imitation.
In a rather illuminating statement in the chapter entitled, “A Catholic Novelist in the Protestant South, “ O’Connor writes,
“I am specifically concerned with fiction because that is what I write.  There is a certain em…